Since the pandemic hit, we’ve all been rethinking what it means to be connected.
For most businesses, “connectivity” used to mean being able to access files and the internet.
But nowadays, being a connected business has become about enabling workforces to span a wider area while remaining aligned, in communication and working collaboratively no matter where they work from.
Technology has played a key part in helping build and support connected operations, giving companies and their employees the means to meet demands and adapt to new ways of working.
But as companies manage a global shift in how they work, they’re now looking to marry technology with a new mindset that puts greater emphasis on employee flexibility, wellbeing and customer service.
So what does this look like in practice?
One of the biggest challenges businesses face in the aftermath of 2020, is breaking down traditional barriers and creating more flexible and Unified Communications.
It’s no longer about connecting static locations (physical offices), it’s about connecting thousands of mobile offices.
Gandy’s is a travel-inspired fashion brand which works around the world building kids’ campuses and giving back to underprivileged children.
They had to adapt their connections in response to COVID-19, having initially struggled to keep employees connected.
Working with us, they adapted to create more virtual connections between staff so they could easily stay in touch during lockdowns and ensure the business ran effectively even with staff working remotely.
For remote workers — whether out in the field or at home — having reliable, high-speed connectivity is incredibly important.
Mobility is key — and for simple, faster and smarter working, companies need to put the right technology and connectivity in the hands of their workers... regardless of where they are working.
Quicklight are an example of this. They have 40 support staff and 85 engineers who are constantly working on the road. They needed a solution that would allow them to work more efficiently, giving them the information they needed, when they needed it (all while reducing paperwork and maximising mobility).
Using our Total Workforce Mobility system, they were able to provide their on-site engineers with mobile devices and collaboration tools that allowed them to access paperwork electronically and get jobs quicker.
The result? Engineers were able to save more than an hour in their day.
Companies need to do the same for their remote and home-based workforces: provide them with the tools and connections to do their jobs quickly and efficiently.
On sites where reliable connections are critical, like hospitals, airports or military bases, a Mobile Private Network (MPN) offers a good solution.
An MPN essentially creates private, dedicated connections that are only accessible by employees on that network. They can’t, for instance, be used by members of the public who happen to be in the area.
It means you have guaranteed capacity (because you know exactly who is on the network) and can easily plan for scale as the area or capacity in the area grows.
For those in hospitals, for example, it means no delays in sending data or information over the network which — when dealing with critically ill patients — is essential.
Breaking down geographical borders is a critical part of business connections.
If businesses want to hire globally, they need global connections that can keep colleagues in touch with each other all over the world.
From a customer perspective, you need reliable connections to stay close to your global customer base.
Innocent Drinks are a great example of this — they connected their offices across Europe and the UK using a Wide Area Network (WAN).
Using a WAN, they were able to create a single, global network, allowing all of their teams — no matter where they were — to access the business network and connect with customers. Better yet, employees could continue to work as they did before… just on a much bigger scale.
With the WAN, they could connect to a “fast and seamless data network” and all information is sent and stored efficiently.
How do businesses manage the connections of a global remote working environment?
This is a question businesses have been asking themselves for years, and for which the technology is now available.
From providing mobile devices to building the infrastructure for employees to stay connected with each other and customers, businesses now have the opportunity to rethink how they work and what being a connected company means to them.
The fact is that the idea of the modern workplace is evolving — and businesses need to do all they can to adapt to these changes and manage it effectively.
Around the globe, our network reaches 182 countries.
We provide the underlying transport network, the virtual overlay, and the platform to prioritise everything.
Gartner names Vodafone as a Leader in its 2020 Magic Quadrant for Network Services, Global.